The World Trade Organisation Support Programme for Doctoral Studies (also known as the PhD Internship Programme) aims to support the development of academic expertise on WTO issues in developing countries. The WTO Secretariat invites doctoral students from developing countries to conduct research at the WTO and provides them with mentoring/advice in close collaboration with the students’ academic supervisors.
Participants in the PhD Internship Programme are expected to advance their doctoral thesis during their time at the WTO, taking advantage of access to WTO facilities and information as well as opportunities for interaction with the general trade policy community.
They are not expected to undertake assignments on behalf of the WTO Secretariat. A mentor is allocated to the doctoral student for the duration of his/her internship. The role of the mentor is to provide the student with advice, as required, in close collaboration with the student’s academic supervisors. Before the end of the PhD Internship Programme, the participant is required to give a seminar on his/her work.
Aim and Benefits of WTO PhD PhD Internship Program
Interns under the PhD Internship Programme receive a daily allowance of CHF 60 (including weekends and official holidays falling within the selected period). In addition, travel expenses (economy class air fare) to and from Geneva is covered by the WTO.
Medical health insurance coverage is mandatory in Switzerland, and interns are responsible for organizing their own health insurance prior to commencing their internship at the WTO.
Requirements for WTO PhD PhD Internship Program Qualification
- The programme is open to doctoral students from Developing and Least-Developed Countries and customs territories that are WTO Members (or engaged in WTO accession negotiations). Government officials are not eligible to apply to the programme.
- Applicants must be undertaking a WTO-related PhD or equivalent in economics, law, international relations or other relevant discipline.
- Applicants must be in the final stage of their PhD. As a general guideline, a minimum of 75% of their thesis should be completed and submitted with their application.
- If the thesis is not in one of the three official WTO languages (English, French or Spanish) this will reduce the likelihood of acceptance to the programme (which depends on the availability of WTO staff to serve as mentor).
- Applications must be accompanied by a written recommendation from the applicant’s academic supervisor plus a letter from the University attended by the applicant confirming that he/she is registered for a PhD degree.
- Those who are accepted into the PhD Support Programme will be requested to provide a medical certificate prior to the commencement of their residency.
- Prior to accepting a candidate, the WTO Selection Committee may contact the applicant’s academic supervisor if further information is deemed necessary.
How to Apply
Interested candidates, who meet the above criteria, should complete two steps for their application to be considered:
Complete a general internship application form on the WTO external jobs platform
Send a separate email to ChinaProgramme@wto.org to indicate your interest in the China WTO Accessions Internship Programme, with a copy of the online application form attached to the e-mail.
There is no opening or closing date for applications. Internships may be offered at any time during the year. A maximum of five internship positions are available per year.